Large building with classical architecture and greek columns.

I am angry.

You had no right to seize our peace.

What right did you have to destroy our century-old durbars?

What right did you have to take away thousands of innocent lives, kill their hopes and bury their unfulfilled dreams?

Now every time I pass by the broken squares, I am filled with angst, guilt, and a sad reminder of the day I never want to recall.

There is no square.

I hear the wheels of the chariot screech in pain.

I kneel on the ground and whisper everything will be okay.

It doesn’t say a word.

Busy street with families, tourists, and street vendors

You left us with nothing.

Broken walls, broken souls, and broken promises.

I walk towards the office door.

I touch the floor with my Forever 21 sandals.

For the first time in seven months, I feel its texture.

Small square, big square.

Rough, concrete, cement.

Colliding against my feet.

You came uninvited.

You tore us apart.

Window with bars in a brick building

In order to enjoy the beauty of the firefly, you need to accept darkness and be comfortable with it.

We are all bruised.

In one way or the other.

Samara whispers, I want things to be normal again. 

Nirvaan, do you know this feeling?

What feeling?

That feeling when you feel like the ground sweeps you off your feet and you feel like you could die.

That feeling, Nirvaan, I am talking about that feeling.

Young Asian woman lying in the grass, a big smile on her face and her dark hair fanned out around her.

Samara is laying in her clover garden and it is a lovely summer afternoon. She is blankly staring at the blue sky canvas when suddenly she notices a long white line swoosh through like a meteor and fizzle out with a mild blast.

“Oh, that was something,” she says to herself and goes back to her daydreaming. 

Seconds later, she hears a thud. 

Planes but not something you would travel in.

One after the other they start flying over her head.

They look like spaceships, and they look weird.

Samara rushes inside and switches on the tv. The news channel is announcing that thousands of fighter planes have been released by an anonymous group and they are coming to kill people in her country.

War has begun and we need to leave the country Samara. Right now.

Large group of people, all holding umbrellas, standing outside near an old building.

They have shot mothers and their unborn children.

They have not spared anybody.

There was a huge bomb blast just two meters outside our house.

They are here and there is no way out.

I am hiding under my bed.

boots ruthlessly marching in

they load bullets and fire off a few test shots and blow up the entire living room

everybody is dead 

they then scan the room and leave

I peak from the window and see they just shot a man

blood is pouring off his chest

I wonder what a bullet piercing me would feel like

Decaying stucco buildings

Buildings collapse like a house of cards.

I mindlessly run towards the door every time there was a slight treble as if I were a robot, programmed to behave this way.

And you say, AI will take over the world.

Duck. Cover. Hold. None of that made sense to me.

Sleepless nights follow.

I cry myself to sleep.

Group of men sitting along a brick wall

It is as if we have forgotten to smile. The whole city feels like a warzone. We are still trying to smile.

That is our inherent resilience. We are all bruised and we share the same pain.

Walking around the city isn’t the same anymore. 

Now we look at each other with soulless eyes. 

It is so dark I can almost see the fireflies 

mindlessly wandering with their glowing neon wings 

Kathmandu, are we heart-broken?